"Poll question: Who is in a worse position after the Trade Deadline"
While many purport that the Lakers are hurt the most from this fiasco of a week - there is a strong argument to be made that they will actually be better off (in the end) for this deal not going through right now.
The Lakers essentially offered the house - they would've grossly overpaid for AD for the luxury to get him right now - but a Laker team with Bron/AD but not other valuable moving parts (no BI, Lonzo, Hart, Kuz, Zu, Rondo & multiple picks) would've been an immense price to pay to land AD when there's a target-rich environment this Summer to explore (Kawhi, Kemba, Klay, KD, Kyrie etc...). The Lakers now get a chance to further develop their young core and head into the off-season with significant cap-space flexibility to land big fish.
Conversely - the Pels likely just balked at an offer that will likely turn out to be the best return value for AD. Sure, many speculate that opening up negotiations with other teams is the smart thing to do (and there's logic to that) - what will these other teams reasonably offer for AD without express interest in signing with them? The notion that Boston will offer Tatum, Rozier, Brown and multiple picks is naive. AD doesn't want to be there. What other package would be as compelling as the Lakers rich offer? Now, the Pels have to deal with a malcontent AD playing out the rest of the season with a dead-end mentality and no incentive for the team to grow. Had they dealt w/ the Lakers - they begin their resurgence right now with significant young talent to be excited about.
Sure, the Pels stuck it to the Lakers and it likely felt good (in the short term by "winning" this battle) to feel like they didn't bend to Rich Paul and superstar mobility/agency - but did they win the long-term war? I think as this season rolls along, summer comes & goes - and the Pels are in a situation of going into yet another season with the prospect of AD still on the roster - they will then have to make a move out of desperation and will likely take much lesser deal for AD.
They can feel good from an emo perspective of not dealing with the Lakers - but will their franchise be better off because of it?
Will be interesting to revisit this in several months to see how this plays out - but my money is on the Pels not being able to land nearly the return value that was just offered (rather recklessly) via the Lakers who were willing to grossly overpay.